Weighing too much might affect young minds

September 4, 2012 1:37:00 PM PDT
As the new school year gets under way there is good reason for teenagers to watch their weight.

A new study says being too heavy may be affecting young minds, and the biggest concern is for those with metabolic syndrome. It's a cluster of problems, including belly fat and high blood pressure, that set the stage for illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease.

A study in the journal Pediatrics found teenagers with metabolic syndrome had significantly lower math and spelling scores, and lower attention span and mental flexibility. Areas of their brains involving learning and memory were also smaller.

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